High-profile civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump took to Twitter late Sunday to call attention to the arrest of an 8-year-old at a Florida school.
Video of the December 2018 incident, which happened at a Key West school, was released by Crump. It shows officers patting the boy down and telling him he's going to jail. He's asked to put his hands behind his back and an officer tries to handcuff him.
Eventually, another officer says it's "not worth it" and the boy is told his hands are too small for the cuffs.
“At eight years old, three and a half feet tall, and 64 [pounds], this little boy didn’t pose a threat to anyone," Crump said in a statement.
'It hurts your bones': Private special ed schools can restrain kids with disabilities 1,000s of times. Parents might not know.
The child is led from the school and before he is taken to a police vehicle an officer says, "You understand this is very serious, OK? I hate that you put me in this position that I have to do this. The thing about it is you made a mistake and now it's time to learn from it and grow from it, right? Not repeat the same mistake again."
Crump will hold a Tuesday press conference announcing his intention to file a civil lawsuit against against the officers involved in the incident, along with school officials, the city of Key West and the Monroe County School District.
Crump is also the attorney representing the family of George Floyd, a Black man who died after a former Minneapolis Police Department officer knelt on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes. With Crump at Tuesday's press conference will be attorney Devon Jacob and the boy's mother.
"As a former police officer, I am appalled by the conduct of these officers," Jacob said in a statement.
The boy, who has special needs, had an Individualized Education Program in place at the school, according to Crump.
Defund police in schools? How the movement got momentum after George Floyd's death
On the day of the incident, the boy was placed with "a substitute teacher who had no awareness or concern about his needs and who escalated the situation by using her hands to forcibly move him," Crump said in his statement.
He added the teacher called the police when the boy "acted out." NBC News, citing an arrest report, reported the boy had allegedly punched a teacher who was supervising lunch in the chest.
According to the outlet, the teacher had asked the boy to sit by her -- after she repeatedly asked him to sit properly -- and the boy refused. NBC News reported the boy cursed at the teacher when she walked over to escort him to where she was sitting.
Crump's office said in a statement the boy was charged with felony battery.
Policy shifts amid national unrest: A look at how cities, states are responding to police brutality
Crump did not confirm where the incident took place. A Monroe County School District spokesperson did not respond to a question about where in the district in the incident happened.
"The District is not, and has not, been involved in litigation about this incident," the district spokesperson said in a Monday evening in an email to USA TODAY. "Due to the possibility of this matter becoming a legal issue in the future, we have been advised not to make further comment about the incident at this time."
The Key West Police Department did not respond to requests for comment from USA TODAY.
Crump said the boy was "failed" and called the incident "horrific."
"This is a heartbreaking example of how our educational and policing systems train children to be criminals by treating them like criminals -- if convicted, the child in this case would have been a convicted felon at eight years old," Crump said.